Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Our Wild Adventures ~ Part 1

Brody's birthday weekend continued with a fun trip to the heart of south Georgia about three hours away in Valdosta.  We had never traveled to Valdosta before and really knew nothing about it.  Our Cub Scout troop had planned their Spring trip to a little theme park there that was hosting a Boy Scout weekend.  The theme park is called Wild Adventures and is like a small version of Disney's Animal Kingdom.  It boasts both a large animal park and a theme park with rides and a waterpark.  It is also a popular concert venue for this part of the state.  The rides were perfect for our kids' ages as Brody could ride almost every ride in the park, and there were many rides for the little ones too.  There were only a couple of bigger coasters that Brody wasn't ready for.  If it wasn't for Brody, it would not be worth it to take our family to a theme park yet because Evan hates the rides.  Sigh.  Seriously, he can ride the crazy rides that throw you around and make you sick, but he does not want to ride anything that seems to take you up high and has big drops.  I guess he battles a little fear of heights like me although I have always overcome my fear.  I do encourage him to try because I know that he will likely enjoy it once he gets past his fear.  But mostly, this was a special trip for Brody since he seems to love all types of rides.  The Cub Scout passes were very affordable and allowed us to enjoy two days at the park for the price of one.  We also could have camped out on the park grounds, but most of our troop decided that after a long, hot day at the park, everyone would want showers and air conditioning so everyone stayed in hotels.  It was a fun weekend, and we look forward to visiting this place again. 

These boys are ready for adventure. 

Oh Evan.  He just had to do the slide first.  He doesn't like rides, but he just loves a slide.  

Brody and I were excited to ride Swamp Thing as our first roller coaster of the day.  He is the best riding buddy ever! 

After a special lunch with the scouts, we headed off to the waterpark.  

While Evan and Brody ran off to play on a larger water play area, Grayson enjoyed this little splash pool. 

He is not afraid of the water. 

But Mattox did have to be encouraged to get in the water. 

I didn't get nearly enough pictures in the waterpark area because I didn't want the camera and our phones getting wet.  It was impossible to take pictures of the waterslides anyway.  Evan and I did the big waterslide together, and Brody and I did a smaller one.  There was also a large wave pool, but the wave machine was turned off while we were there. After we left the waterpark (and were stil wet), we decided to ride a water ride next.  Mattox and I waited on the observation deck for Daddy and big brothers to ride.  Grayson was taking a nap.  Mattox got a big surprise when the first boat came down the hill and made a huge splash that got everyone on the deck wet.  

He was so funny running away from the water. 

After that first hit, he didn't fall for it again and stayed back. 

But we watched as Daddy and Evan climbed the big hill and came down with a big splash.  That huge wall of white water in the top left picture is the wave that engulfs the observation deck.  It is pretty intense. 

Yep, Evan was terrified as he huddled against Daddy. 

Brody and Daddy were happy at the end...Evan not so much. 

Yep, Evan was mad.  Haha! 

Yep, Brody and I decided to sit in the front.  Our motto is "go big or go home!"  

Yep, were under all that water.  Haha!

Soaked and happy.  

So Brody wanted to ride the chair swings.  Can you tell how thrilled Evan was?  Sigh.  

Brody was excited with his hands raised the whole ride.  Evan wore his best pout face. 

There was a cool big bug exhibition.  Mattox really liked all the giant bugs. 

Checking out the giant snail. 

Grayson and I weren't scared of the giant bee. 

Grayson pointed out all the big bugs. 

A huge spider was about to eat a big ladybug.  We crawled through an ant tunnel to get out. 

Mattox really liked riding on a bumblebee. 

I love his happy face so much.  It melts my heart. 

Yes, this was more Evan's speed.  

Grayson and Mommy enjoyed the bumblebee ride too.  He liked controlling the bee and making him fly higher or lower. I would have been quite seasick if I had let him have his way. 

Mattox got to drive us on a safari.  We had a creepy guy riding in the backseat. 

We saw some giant tortoises on the safari. 

Evan and Brody went on their own safari. 

Then, we finally got to ride the safari train where we got to see many animals from around the world.  It was almost as good as the safari ride at Animal Kingdom.  They really have a lot of neat animals. 

Mattox liked that it was a train.  Grayson got him a good nap on the ride. 

Ostrich, Llama, elephant, and giraffe. 

We went through a tunnel under a big wooden roller coaster, and when the coaster passed over our heads, it was very loud like a hurricane. There were various species of antelope like impala, oryx, waterbucks, and Thomson gazelles. 

There was also a one horned rhino, wildebeest, zebu cattle, and little pygmy goats. 

The animals had nice large habitats to roam free.  There were also zebra. 

Evan loves the ostrich, and I like the little gazelles.  The Asian elephant was very sweet.  I think most or all of the animals are rescue animals, including the elephant. The park started out with just a few animals and grew to become a theme park which I believe allows them to raise the money to care for the animals.  The tour guide on the safari told us the story, but I just can't remember all of it. 

Brody still loves a train ride.  Evan and Mattox liked driving this old truck. 

After a long first day at the park, we headed for the exit to get dinner and go to our hotel.  These boys just had to try out the limbo game on the way out.  I don't think they have ever done limbo. 

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